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When Pop Broke Up With Jazz

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 3:35pm

For the first half of the 20th century, Tin Pan Alley songwriters like Irving Berlin and the Gershwins dominated pop music. By the the 1950s, tastes had changed, and the music changed with them.

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'American Sniper' Exposes Unresolved Issues About The Iraq War

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 3:13pm

American Sniper, based on the life of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, has been a surprise hit at the box office. But as NPR's Elizabeth Blair reports, some say the movie misrepresents Kyle and glorifies war.

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5 Surprises From President Obama's YouTube Interviews

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 1:49pm

The president didn't stray far from his talking points, but the questions were surprisingly candid anyway.

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Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Broad City' And Required Reading

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 8:32am

On this week's show, the Comedy Central half-hour Broad City and the many hours we spent reading classics because we had to. (And sometimes wanted to.)

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Why Would You Share A Secret With A Stranger?

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 8:29am

"Secrets...can be shocking, or silly, or soulful," says Frank Warren, the founder of PostSecret. He shares a few of the half-million secrets that strangers have sent him on postcards.

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What's Your Coming Out Story?

Fri, 01/23/2015 - 8:29am

Equality advocate Ash Beckham offers a fresh story about empathy and openness — and it involves pancakes.

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'Red Army' Explores How The Cold War Played Out On Ice

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 4:07pm

When the U.S. team beat the USSR during the 1980 Olympics, it was dubbed the "miracle on ice." Red Army profiles the Russian athletes and their place in the Soviet Union's propaganda machine.

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Some Glittery Favorites From The Miss Universe National Costume Show

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 3:59pm

Every year at the Miss Universe pageant, things get a little bit amazing.

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Hostess Isn't The Mostest: Make Your Own Sno Balls At Home

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 3:23pm

When Hostess Brands declared bankruptcy, Jennifer Steinhauer started preparing for the snack food apocalypse. Among the foods she tackled was a pink treat she had no respect for — the Sno Ball.

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Broadcaster Al Michaels Gets Ready To Provide 'Lyrics' For The Super Bowl

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 12:12pm

Michaels will anchor the Feb. 1 game between the Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots. He tells Fresh Air about when he fell in love with sports and the hardest sport to announce.

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Delicious Short Stories, Ripe On The Vine In 'Honeydew'

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 11:03am

Our reviewer Alan Cheuse has rapturous praise for Edith Pearlman's new story collection: "The first thing I wanted to do after finishing, well, I wanted to go right back and start from the beginning.

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The Hills Are Alive

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

Every correct answer contains the letters H-I-L-L. What phrase metaphorically refers to a fatal weak spot? If you slay this round, then perhaps you don't have one of these when it comes to trivia.

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The Actor Factor

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

Stars sell movies. Be honest: would you rather watch Snakes on a Plane or "Snakes on a John Wayne"? In this game, contestants replace words in movie titles with rhyming celebrity names.

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State Of Mind

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

Get on that midnight train to...North Korea?? Guess what US state actually completes these lyrics as Jonathan Coulton sings famous songs with the wrong geographic regions in their titles.

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Sports, Explicated

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

Grab your oversized porous foam digit, because in this game, contestants must decipher the names of college sports teams from an overly literal explanation. Go athlete! Do the sport!

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Buffer The Consequences

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

It's going down at Ask Me Another! Don't crumble or stumble under the pressure, because in this game contestants have to think of words that end in "-umble." So let's get ready to...

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John Darnielle: Master Of Reality

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 10:02am

The polymath musician behind the Mountain Goats, and author of Wolf In White Van shares some heartfelt musings on death metal and creative expression. Plus, a special live performance.

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The Vastness Of Violent Loss In 'See How Small'

Thu, 01/22/2015 - 6:03am

Scott Blackwood's new novel, based on a real murder case, follows a community rocked by the slaying of three teenaged girls. Reviewer Michael Schaub calls it "brutal, necessary, and near perfect."

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Bulgakov's 'Master' Still Strikes A Chord In Today's Russia

Wed, 01/21/2015 - 1:16pm

Russian author Mikhail Bulgakov's classic, The Master and Margarita, ridiculed Soviet leaders and bureaucracy. It wasn't published until 27 years after his death, but still resonates with Russians.

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'Parks And Recreation' Shows The Beating Heart Of Its Great Love Story

Wed, 01/21/2015 - 12:57pm

Parks And Recreation nears its end with a wonderful close-up episode for its dearest loves.

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